Home Energy Score

San Rafael

(415) 942-6565

Santa Rosa

(707) 452-3464

Home Energy Score

Utility costs are on the rise. Between January 2021 and September 2023, electric rates went up 38%. natural gas prices rose 24% between November 2021 and November 2022.

It is obvious we need to make homes more efficient to keep our energy bills in check. Is your home inefficient? Why guess? You can perform a Home Energy Score (HES) audit! John Owens Services has a Department of Energy-certified Home Energy Score Assessor that uses calculations and measurements to provide a score from 1-10 of your home. It is similar to giving a miles per gallon rating on a car; the higher the number, the more efficient the home.

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How Was the Home Energy Score Created?

The energy score program was created using a formula developed by the U.S. Department of Energy to determine a home’s energy usage. A home energy assessment takes measurements in every room and rates your home on a scale of 1 to 10, with 1 being the least efficient and 10 being the most efficient. This assessment considers your home’s energy use and your estimated energy costs. The home energy score provides a list of upgrades to your home that can pay off in 10 years or less. Home energy assessments can also help you prioritize projects based on the associated costs.

When to get an HES Score

Home energy assessments are always a good idea to determine the energy use in your home and how to improve it to save energy. Since it recommends upgrades with a short payoff for their energy savings, you know the investment will be worth it. If you are curious about your energy usage in your home and areas in which you can improve, this is the perfect time to get a Home Energy Score for your home.

Apart from knowing which energy upgrades to perform, having an official Home Energy Score on record can be very useful if you ever plan on selling your home. Potential buyers would like to have as much information about the home as possible. By making this aspect visible to them, they will be more interested in the home, especially if the score is high compared to others in the same neighborhood.

Before selling a home, taking care of the problem areas in home energy use can be a great way to make your home even more attractive to potential buyers, since it will have more to offer in terms of safety and energy savings from this assessment program.

What is a Home Energy Assessor and What is a Home Energy Score?

Home Energy Score rating chart

A Home Energy Score assessor is a Department of Energy certified professional who will visit your home and conduct the Home Energy Audit. An assessor can be a licensed contractor, a home inspector, or a specialist in the home energy audit field. These professionals come to your home and conduct a home energy assessment, where they walk through the house to collect a large amount of information to provide your home with a rating based on its energy efficiency.

What is inspected as part of the Home Energy Assessment?

The following tasks are included in the HES:

  • Measuring the square footage of the home and foundation
  • Inspecting the efficiency ratings and sizing of the energy systems currently used, including your space heating, cooling, and hot water heater
  • Determining the number and thickness of windows
  • Insulation thickness in walls, attic and crawlspace
  • Electrical panel inspection
  • Inspecting seams and penetrations for air sealing
  • Condition of air ducts

These items are optional:

  • Duct Blaster: Tests for leakage in your space heating system; most ducts leak up to 30%
  • Blower Door Test: Tests the amount of air changes in your home in an hour. Typical spots where we see the most leakage are electrical sockets, above stoves, fireplaces and even windows, which can be big culprits for air leakage. The target range of air changes in the home is around 2 changes an hour; most homes see 5–10 air changes.

They will also get an estimate of total energy use from fuel type, operating conditions, and occupant behavior.

What Do They Do With All This Information?

From this assessment, they will be able to give you a score between 1 and 10 on how efficient your home currently is before giving customized recommendations to make cost-effective improvements within the home as well as estimates of annual savings and return on investment for those upgrades.

With the Home Energy Assessment, the auditor can also give homeowners a preview of what their Home Energy Score could increase to if they decide to make the recommended improvements. For example, if your home starts out with a score of 3, implementing the energy efficiency upgrades recommended from the test could bump the score up to a 7. Scores from Home Energy Audits will also show you the estimated annual savings with less energy consumed in the home.

Next, we begin the process of starting to plan any future upgrades to improve your Home Energy Score. Estimates for upgrades are included as part of the audit. John Owens Services will also be able to obtain permits, install equipment, and assist with any associated rebates.

What Are Common Upgrades recommended?

  • Insulation upgrades to attic, basement or walls.
  • Heat pump water heater
  • Ductwork upgrades
  • Duct sealing
  • Seal Can Lights and seams in attic
  • Install programmable thermostat

What Do Home Energy Scores Cost?

Typically, a home energy audit will cost around $399; the price may vary depending on the size of the home. BayREN offers rebates for home energy assessments that could be available to you. It is always important to ask about any potential rebates you may be eligible for when it comes to home energy assessments. Any upgrades recommended and sold will come with additional costs for the services.

The John Owens Way

Our philosophy is simple, we always want to maintain equipment to give it the longest life possible. Next, we want to focus on repairing when something goes wrong. Then only as the last choice, we replace equipment when needed. That’s the John Owens Way.

San Rafael
(415) 942-6565
Santa Rosa
(707) 452-3464



Regular maintenance keeps your home’s systems running well all year long. We’ll help you gain efficiency and save money.



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San Rafael
(415) 942-6565
Santa Rosa
(707) 452-3464